I just got back today from my five day trip to Taipei, Taiwan with Yuko! It was great– I can’t wait to get my film developed and start posting pictures — which I’ll do tomorrow, if the photo shop is open. In the meantime I thought I’d post some pictures I took with my digital of the food we ate in Taipei…mm…
First meal, Shilin Night Market at 9pm on Tuesday night
Yuko's mom's friend's sister (who took us out several times) described this as Taiwanese style "tempura" - I guess it was just fried dough with sauce?
Squid and root vegetables in a verrry thick broth
Chinese style breakfast buffet at the hotel
There were a few iffy things in here but it was interesting to try it all. Our favorites were the homemade soy milk and the sauteed bean sprouts.
Hong Kong style Bao from a tiny shop a few kilometers from the National Palace Museum
So we were already hungry when we arrived at the museum but we decided to stick it out for "a few hours" and eat after...Unfortunately our hunger drove us to practically run through the museum, finishing it all in less than an hour (oops..). We left and walked until we saw food - which happened to be a small bao vendor a couple km away. We obviously couldn't read any of the signs so we just raised our fingers to signal that we each wanted one and she handed us a random bao. I have no idea what was inside (pork? green onion?) but it was one of my favorite meals of the trip. It also cost less that 50 cents.
Shanghai style Dim Sum
Another meal Yuko's mom's friend's sister & her husband treated us to. They were incredibly hospitible and continued buying us different things to try well beyond when we were nearly-in-tears full. It was great.
These were a little bit like Japanese mochi, and had various fillings like melon, strawberry, and some kind of bean.
I'm not sure what all this is (tofu? meat? vegetables?) but these kinds of stands were all over.
Vegetarian buffet lunch
There are a lot of Buddhist vegetarians in Taiwan and thus a lot of vegetarian restaurants! Yay! This was incredible. I have never seen such a varied vegetarian buffet in my life. If I lived here I would eat at these places every day. You pay for the meal by weight - this came out to 90 Taiwanese Dollars, or about $3 U.S.
And lastly, my very favorite thing to eat in Taiwan which I had for two meals yesterday: Shave Ice (!)
I know it doesn't look too appetizing here but I promise it is. This is from a small shop in an outdoor market behind our hotel. For 35TD (1$ US) you get to pick four toppings for your shaved ice - we got grass jelly, barley, tapioca balls of some sort, and lychee jellies. Mmm refreshing.. : )
And for our last meal yesterday we decided to have shave ice for dinner (well, I sort of pushed this idea a little..hehe). Yuko's is on the left and includes mango, strawberry, kiwi, and mango sorbet, Amy's is on the top and includes tofu and sweet potato and taro mochi, and mine is on the bottom right and includes all kinds of tapioca, beans, mochi, jellies... well you get the idea, all the sweet chewy things.
This trip was definitely a culinary adventure. It seemed more like an eating trip than a sightseeing one..haha..well maybe half and half. I’m sure more pictures of street food stands and such will turn up when I go get my film developed. I can’t wait! Hopefully you can’t either…: P. Anyway what are your thoughts on the food? Would you try these things? Have you before? I liked almost everything but a lot of it did feel really heavy.. especially after eating light and lightly flavored things all the time in Japan.
*click images for full view!